Activities to enjoy outside in Calgary while preventing COVID-19 spread

Calgarians took advantage of the sunshine and blue sky Saturday, with many trying to stay safe from COVID-19 while getting some exercise.

Read more: Alberta confirms 1,486 new COVID-19 cases, 3 more deaths on Saturday

While no activity or gathering is without risk, one infectious disease physician says the danger is lower while outdoors.

“If the air is moving around you, the chance of getting enough droplets or aerosol-type spread into the air that would actually reach another person is much lower unless you’re extremely close,” said Dr. Lynora Saxinger.

Indoor gatherings are not allowed in Alberta at this time.

Outdoor gatherings are allowed but they’re limited to 10 people.

Read more: More calls for COVID-19 vaccines to be offered to a wider range of people in Alberta

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Medical experts say everyone outside of a household or close contact should stay two metres apart.

On a risk scale for COVID-19 transmission, Saxinger said going for a walk with a friend is low.

“If you’re walking and talking with someone and you are not distancing well, it might actually be worthwhile to consider using a mask or just be really attentive to the distance you’re keeping,” Saxinger said.

Read more: Alberta reports first AstraZeneca-linked blood clot

A more risky choice is dining on a patio with people outside of your household, which is only allowed with two close contacts if you live alone.

“A lot of outdoor dining has shelter situations that might change our ideas of how good the airflow is. There are high-touch surfaces, you are face to face for a longer time and you usually aren’t wearing a mask while eating,” Saxinger said.

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